OSU wins; PSU's Grant nets 18
Andrea Walker rescued the Buckeyes with two late free throws.
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) -- With Jessica Davenport having an off night, Andrea Walker came through with the game on the line.
Walker sank two free throws with 1.3 seconds left after tying the game with another foul shot less than a minute earlier, and No. 6 Ohio State beat Penn State 63-61 on Thursday night.
Lady Lions guard Tyra Grant, an Ursuline High graduate, fouled Walker while going for a rebound after Maria Moeller missed an open 3-pointer.
Walker, a freshman, stepped to the line and calmly hit both shots, and Penn State's Kamela Gissendanner missed a desperation 3 as time expired to give Ohio State (14-1, 3-0 Big Ten) its seventh straight win.
"I made my shots in practice, so it was about me concentrating and putting them in," Walker said. "I was kind of nervous, but just concentrating on putting them in."
Davenport gets 13
Davenport finished with 13 points and 10 rebounds, but looked off all night after physical post play by Penn State's Charity Renfro, who got help with double teams.
Davenport was outplayed by Penn State center Amanda Brown, who had 20 points, 14 rebounds and a couple of floor burns from hustling for loose balls.
"That's probably the most passion that we've played with," said Penn State coach Rene Portland, who missed another chance to get her 600th victory with the Lady Lions.
She came close, though. Grant scooped in a bucket after stumbling trying to get around a defender to give Penn State (8-10, 1-4) a 61-60 lead with just more than a minute left.
Walker then hit 1 of 2 free throws to tie the game. After Gissendanner missed a jumper on Penn State's next possession, Walker nailed the two late foul shots for the victory.
Moeller, another freshman, finished with 10 points.
"We like our freshman. We've liked them since the day they walked in the door," Ohio State coach Jim Foster said.
Grant, who won Ohio's Ms. Basketball last season, finished with 18 points.
After trailing the entire first half, Penn State took its first lead 6 minutes into the second half after a 3-point play by Kamela Gissendanner made it 42-41.
The next sequence exemplified Davenport's frustrating evening. Davenport lost the ball after getting double-teamed, and Brown picked it up to start a break that she finished with an easy layup for a 44-41 lead.
Davenport did hit two late foul shots and found Brandie Hoskins along the baseline for a bucket to help the Buckeyes bounce back.
"It's just a matter of me taking my time, not rushing," Davenport said. "In the first half, I rushed a lot. Second half, I tried taking my time, reversing the ball."
With Davenport struggling, outside shooting helped the Buckeyes build an early eight-point lead, with Moeller hitting a 3-pointer and a 12-foot jumper.
Portland consoled her disappointed team in the locker room after coming close to nailing their biggest win of the year.
"They shouldn't be disappointed in themselves," she said. "They played hard. They played with passion."
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